The Weekend Results Roundup — January 21

Emily Sisson clipped nearly a full minute off her PR at the Houston Half-Marathon. (VICTOR SAILER/PHOTO RUN)

Emily Sisson Just Misses American Record

The top American in the Houston Half-Marathon was Emily Sisson. The 27-year-old Providence alum ripped off a 1:07:30 that missed Molly Huddle’s American Record by a mere 5 seconds. “I was a little disappointed at first just so close to Molly’s record,” she said after taking a whopping 51 seconds off her PR. “I made some mistakes that cost me a bit. But I think tomorrow I’ll be pretty happy with it,” said Sisson.

Ahead of her, Brigid Kosgei clicked off the fastest 13.1 ever on U.S. soil, a 1:05:50 effort that beat fellow Kenyan Fancy Chemutai (1:06:48) by nearly a minute. “I was not expecting to run this fast, but I was prepared to win,” she said. “I was happy to run the fastest time.”

A slow early pace doomed sub-hour hopes for the men, as Ethiopians Shura Kitata (60:11) and Jemal Yimer (60:14) took the top spots. Said Kitata, “It was not a good beginning and the weather was not friendly.” Yimer was one of the runners who took a wrong turn when they accidentally followed a camera truck off the course. Top American was Reed Fischer in 10th (62:06).

Fast Women’s Marathon In Houston

Houston also staged a full-length marathon, with Biruktayit Degefa clocking the event’s No. 3 time ever, 2:23:28. “I came prepared to break the course record,” said the 28-year-old Ethiopian, “but it was colder and that made it difficult.” She missed by 14 seconds. For Degefa, a third win isn’t the only reason she favors Houston. She ended up marrying a taxi driver she met on one of her earlier visits, Abinet Adraro, who also happens to be a top road runner himself.

Ethiopia’s Belaynesh Fikadu came on strong at the end to take 2nd in 2:26:41, passing countrywoman Meseret Belete, 19, who clocked 2:26:56 in her first 26-miler. Kara Goucher’s bid to return to the marathon wars was foiled by a flare-up of an old hamstring injury on the cold day (33°at the start); she was forced to drop out in the 20th mile. Kelsey Bruce finished as the top American, 6th in 2:31:53.

Soaring High In Reno

At the Pole Vault Summit, Katerína Stefanídi had fewer misses than Katie Nageotte on the way to clearing 15-6½ (4.74), and that made the difference after both failed at 15-11¼ (4.86). Said Stefanidi, “I would lie if I didn’t say that we expected a little more from last night’s competition, but with that being said we had a blast jumping.” Lexi Jacobus of Arkansas tied her indoor best of 15-3½ (4.66) in 3rd. Only two other collegians have ever vaulted higher undercover.

Matt Ludwig of Akron won the men’s title with an indoor PR 18-8¾ (5.71), topping Japan’s Seito Yamamoto (18-8¾) and Andrew Irwin (18-5/5.61). Mondo Duplantis cleared 18-1 (5.51) in his college debut, ending up in a tie for 4th. Of note: the LSU frosh was using the same big pole he used to set the World Junior Record last year.

Lots Of Holloway

Once again, Grant Holloway was all over the place at the Clemson Invitational. The Florida junior dazzled in the hurdles, hurdling to the =No. 5 collegiate performance ever in the heats with his 7.49, and running the same time in the final. The next day he won the 200 in 20.69 and contributed a 45.62 to a 3:04.74 relay.

He wasn’t the only fast Florida sprinter. Hakim Sani Brown ran PRs in the heats (6.63) and final (6.62), needing every bit of it to edge teammate Ryan Clark’s 6.62 by 0.004. Texas frosh Jonathan Jones blistered the 400 in 46.21. Denzel Comenentia owned the throws, taking the shot with his 66-½ (20.13) and the weight with a 76-8½ (23.38).

Texas frosh Kynnedy Flannel impressed in winning the women’s sprints at 7.26/22.88. Georgia relayed 3:32.50 to win a solid 4×4 matchup against Kentucky (3:33.51), Texas (3:34.43) and Florida (3:35.57). Keturah Orji opened her season with a 47-2½ (14.39), the No. 2 U.S. leap of all-time.

Houston Shows Off Its Sprint Power

Houston’s Mario Burke blasted 6.56 in the dash at the Red Raider Invitational. Later, his teammates on the 4×4 unleashed a 3:03.31 to become the No. 4 school ever indoors. Personnel: Obi Igbokwe 46.03, Amere Lattin 46.20, Jermaine Holt 46.07, Kahmari Montgomery 45.01.

Texas Tech’s sprinters also came ready. Andrew Hudson won the 200 in 20.41, Derrius Rodgers took 2nd in the 60 at 6.65, and Divine Oduduru won his heat in 6.63. Oduduru later led off a 3:04.93 relay.

LSU’s jumpers showed fine form, JuVaughn Harrison leaping a PR 7-5¼ (2.27) and junior Rayvon Grey hitting a PR 26-5½ (8.06) on his third attempt before shutting it down. The LSU women showed some speed, Kortnei Johnson winning a 7.19/23.30 sprint double and Toneo Marshall and Milan Young both hurdling 8.22.

Donovan Brazier’s Comeback Starts Well

After not running outdoors at all last year after an Achilles injury, Donavan Brazier stole the headlines at the Texas Tech Tri. Running in an open 400 at the collegiate meet, he cruised 600m in 1:15.46, a time that put him No. 10 in world history and No. 5 among Americans. He finished more than a second ahead of A&M’s Carlton Orange (1:16.51) and Trinidad’s Deon Lenore (1:16.90. Orange moved to No. 7 among American collegians.

The hosts handily won both the men’s and women’s divisions ahead of TCU and UTEP. Top highlights from the collegiate side came in the two-lapper, as Devin Dixon (46.95) and Syaira Richardson (53.18) won for the hosts.

The Trojans Have Hurdlers

Albuquerque’s altitude helped showcase the depth of USC’s women’s hurdle squad at the MLK Invitational. Chanel Brissett took the win in 8.07 ahead of Dior Hall (8.08), Anna Cockrell (8.17) and Mecca McGlaston (8.24). Alyssa Wilson of UCLA captured the throws at 57-7¾ (17.57) and 69-3½ (21.12). The top men’s mark went to USC’s Earnie Sears, who added nearly three inches to his high jump best when he soared over 7-5¼ (2.27) on his first attempt. In the 600, USC junior Isaiah Jewett flew to a 1:15.95, making him No. 8 collegian all-time.

2 High School Records For Bullis

Racing on Liberty University’s banked 200 track in Lynchburg, big-name preps flocked to the Virginia Showcase, which featured a pair of national records as the boys relay teams from Bullis (Potomac, Maryland) rewrote history. On Friday, they took down the HSR in the 4 x 400, clocking a 3:12.53 to better the 3:13.06 set by New Bern, North Carolina, in ’09. The splits: senior Andre Turay 49.46, junior Ryan Willie 48.52, junior Jay Pendarvis 47.99, junior Ashton Allen (46.56). On Saturday, three of the four returned in the 4×2 and clocked 1:25.60, crushing the 1:26.09 HSR set by Long Beach Poly in 2005. The order: Ashton Allen, Austin Allen, Turay & Willie.

On the girls side Britton Wilson and Athing Mu overlapped a pair of wins each, raising the possibility that if/when they do finally meet, we could be in for a barnburner. On Friday Wilson (Godwin, Henrico, Virginia) covered 300 in 37.71, to move to No. 5 ever. Mu (Central, Trenton) blitzed the 400 in 52.55, also No. 5 all-time, needing to hurry to beat the 53.30 high school debut of frosh Kayla Davis (Providence, Charlotte). The next day, Wilson moved to No. 2 all-time in the 500 with a 1:10.82. Mu then moved to No. 2 all-time in the 600 with a 1:28.54. □